The good and the bad of working from home

It’s been a growing trend for nearly a decade, but working from home is something many people have had to take on for the first time during COVID-19. And for most, it was a welcome change: over 70% of people say they would look to work from home in the future, a SEEK study has found.

So, aside from working in a tracksuit, what are the things people have liked most about working from home, and what are the downsides?

The good

People working from home report that they felt more positive about their jobs than those who didn’t. Flexibility was a top reported benefit – people relished the opportunity to spend the extra time with family, and the ability to moderate their own workload. Fifty-five per cent of people also increased their exercise while working from home.

This greater level of autonomy improved productivity, with more than 80% of people saying they were equally, if not more productive than when in the office.

The bad

For some, working from home wasn’t what it was cracked up to be.

Not surprisingly, over 30% of people missed human interaction and face-to-face collaboration.

People in the ‘feeling less productive’ camp found the distractions of home life (TV and chores) a major roadblock, and the blurring lines between home and work was a challenge. Around 40% found it much harder to switch off at the end of the working day.

Tech issues, managing equipment and bouncing between video conferencing calls presented hurdles for some, and had a direct impact on productivity.

While the flexibility was a bonus, more than 30% of parents said the distraction of children was a major problem. Navigating work, remote learning and parenting impacted productivity for this group.

Nearly half the respondents also reflected that they worked longer hours and took on extra tasks than before they transitioned to working from home.

Making remote working better

Working from home has its own unique challenges, but there are things you can do to make it a more positive experience.

These tips can help you structure your day while working from home, and these steps can help you get your tech needs sorted. These 5 ways to make working from home better can help you stay connected and productive.

And, if you’re missing the connection with your colleagues, check out these ways to bring the social side of work to life online.

Source: Independent research conducted by Nature on behalf of SEEK. Interviewing 4000 Kiwis annually.

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